Fun Friday Wrap

We’ve had such a fun-filled week (including last weekend). I thought I’d share some of the joy in my “Five on Friday” list. Here we go:

{ONE} Fayetteville Ale Trail

ale trail

Look at our fun, crazy friends. We’re blessed to have found this crew.

B and I had a BLAST touring several local craft breweries with our friends last weekend. Northwest Arkansas is a flourishing area for this type of thing. (There’s even this cool documentary about it.) And we’re the lucky ones who get to benefit from all of the creativity and delicious brews. My favorite of the day was T-Rex from Fossil Cove. It’s really good. And I sampled a lot of beer that day. Hiccup. A couple of the places offered tours, so it was also highly educational. Wink!

{TWO} Repurposed Muffin Tin

muffin tin

Okay, so I’m still on the topic of the beer tour, but I had to share this smart idea. You know I’m a sucker for repurposed anything. Well, I now have a new use for muffin tins!

Let me back up the bus. Whenever you order a flight, which is basically several little shots of beer, it’s usually served in small glasses nestled inside of a wooden tray. When we were at Saddlebock Brewery, they served their glasses in muffin tins. They used dry erase markers to label each of the beer samples. It may have been the beer, but I thought this was pure genius. There you have it!

{THREE} An All-American Performance
american performance

My sweet girls had a 4th grade performance last week that featured all American-themed songs. Clara is pictured on the left, and it’s a bit blurry because I was trying to work around the dude in front of me in the oversized cowboy hat. Seriously, people. Oh, and yes, that’s a giant pig in the background. I’m still not sure why there were farm animals, but they were very funny.

Avery, pictured on the right, was a flag twirler. You can tell from her expression that she was in her element. It was a wonderful moment for us, and for my parents who were able to join us, to celebrate our patriotism. It was much needed. Thank you, my twinsies!

{FOUR} Recovering Puppy

cone head leo

Our little Leo was neutered last week, so he has been recovering the past few days. The Cone of Shame comes off on Sunday, so I’m sure he’ll be back to his jumpy, puppy self once that happens. In the meantime, while he has been napping at my feet, look who came out of her room to play “office” with me…

rosie at the office

It’s Rosie the rabbit! She loved sitting in my lap while I worked. This picture cracked me up because it looks like she’s drinking a latte, and maybe posting a few blackmail pictures of Leo wearing his cone.

{FIVE} Thoughtful Anniversary Gift

IMG_6771 IMG_6772

As many of you know, B and I celebrated our 15th wedding anniversary a tad early when we took our trip to Oregon. Our official date is over Thanksgiving weekend. So in honor of our anniversary month, we’ve been spacing out special surprises for each other. One of them was opening this incredibly thoughtful gift from my parents.

It’s a brass door knocker they received as a wedding gift in 1958! They decided to share it with us on this special milestone. I love this so much. I hope I remember to hang on to gifts like this for my kids one day.

Here’s to more adventures ahead – for all of us, my friends!

Be sure to check out all of the blogging goodness on Five on Friday and Oh, Hey Friday!

Fiveonfriday

-Kate

 

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Handmade Pet Gifts

Rosie ChristmasThis week’s shout out goes to Rosie, my pet rabbit. We boarded her at the vet while we were out of town last week for Thanksgiving, and I really missed that fuzzy little friend of mine. She’s always well cared for at Dr. Lyon’s. In fact, they give her a private room away from the cats and dogs when she stays there. She’s pretty much the most spoiled rabbit in all the land, but I still missed taking care of her and seeing her sweet face every day.

If you have a pet of any kind, I know you totally understand. Pets have a way of making room in your heart. They’re always ready to snuggle or just sit and chill after a hectic day. They quickly become part of your family. So when it comes time for Christmas, I like to include Miss Rosie on the gift list.

With that said, I recently found some cute DIY pet gifts. While I don’t have a cat or dog (yet), some of my friends and family do, so I have a few ideas in here for them. A happy pet makes a happy owner, you know.

Here are a few of my top picks:

 Rope Toy for Dogs

This project just requires a few clean dish towels. I love the simplicity of this idea. I’m going to make a few of these for our local shelter.

If you and your family are looking for ways to give back to your community, call your local shelter to see what they need. Food is usually welcomed, but sometimes they just need a few extra hands to help wash blankets and socialize with the animals.

Food Tin for Dogs or Cats

Food Tin

Source: Tidy Mom

This goodie is inspired by Ballard Designs. I’m thinking you could use acrylic paint and stencils if you didn’t want to go the route of vinyl stickers. If you’re feeling extra generous, go ahead and fill the tin with some food or treats before gifting.

Feather Toy for Cats

Feather Cat Toy

Source: Martha Stewart

This toy uses felt that’s cut to look like feathers, but you could easily use real feathers from a craft store. We had a neighbor cat that would come to play on our front porch every now and then, and I discovered that a feather is to cats as One Direction is to teenage girls. They. go. crazy.

Treat Box for Rabbits, Hamsters or Guinea Pigs

Bunny Treat Box

Source: Bunny Approved

Kleenex has some of the prettiest tissue boxes right now. I might use one of those as the base. The picture pretty much stops here. I’m going to kick it up a notch by filling the paper tubes with timothy hay and making it a full-on treat box. I’ll wrap the whole thing with tissue paper, secure it with a cute twine bow, and boom – it’ll be fit for any furry friend big or small.

Store-bought treats

If you don’t have time to make anything, not to fret. Check out Three Dog Bakery out of Kansas City for the most amazing treats for dogs – and cats! Any of their items would make perfect stocking stuffers or gifts. I mean, who could resist a cup of Beg Nog? Beg Nog LatteIf you want some bun-bun treats, look no further than the Busy Bunny. Rosie will be getting several of these willow “candy” canes in her stocking this year.CandyCane

Here’s hoping your furry friends have the merriest of Christmases and a hip hoppin’ new year!

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Give Parsley a Chance

Parsley

Freshly picked parsley

Parsley is one of those herbs that’s usually tossed aside. And I mean that literally. In restaurants you’ll see it perched on the edge of a pretty plate – and that’s where it stays. It’s not the star player in many recipes, and it doesn’t have an elegant fragrance like basil, oregano or thyme. So what’s it good for?

To be honest, I was pretty nonchalant about parsley until I started planting it in my garden for my pet rabbit, Rosie. She looooves parsley, but only when it’s fresh. She’s a bit of a princess that way. So I always include a little patch in my garden for her.

Rosie the Rabbit

Meet Rosie the Rabbit! Pets deserve an organized and creative life, too. So you’ll see Rosie featured in posts from time-to-time.

Get creative in the kitchen

One day I casually tossed a few springs of parsley in my salad and loved its punch. It has such a fresh taste with hints of lemon and pepper. The next thing I knew, I was sneaking it into soups and stews. It’s native to the Mediterranean, but can be used in all kinds of dishes.

Here are some recipe ideas from beautiful Sunset Magazine. This article features 11 ways to cook with fresh parsley.

parsley-ravioli-with-brown-butter-sauce

Parsley Ravioli with Brown Butter Sauce from Sunset Magazine. A plateful of yum.

Get healthy

Come to find out, parsley is really good for you. It’s rich in all kind of vitamins: A, B1, B3, C, and K. That’s a nice portion of the vitamin alphabet. It also keeps your immune system strong and encourages digestion. No wonder so many chefs nudge it onto our plates.

Some people even use it for medicinal purposes. A few of the more interesting options I’ve read include:

  • Reducing hair loss by massaging parsley essential oil into the scalp.
  • Relieving joint pain by eating parsley daily.
  • Treating insect bites with the juices squeezed from the leaves.

Grow your own

If I’ve piqued your interest, why not grow your own? It’s a cool-weather-lovin’ kind of herb, so right now is a great time to plant. Here’s a helpful guide from Gardening Know How.

As a tip, flat leaf parsley has a little better flavor for cooking than its curly cousin. You’ll want to keep that in mind when buying seeds or plants from the nursery. By the way, I’m a huge fan of nurseries that carry the Monrovia brand. They always have quality plants.

I hope you’ll give parsley a chance. Comment below or email me your favorite way to enjoy this healthy herb!

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